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Latest contest news and updates

Money Matters - Simplified


Google wants you to hack Chrome OS, and get millions in rewards

Successful hackers will be richly rewarded by Google

Google is giving away cash prizes worth millions for hacking into its Chrome OS.

Top world horses headed for Hong Kong

Hong Kong -- Twenty-five winners of 47 graded races around the world will contest the Hong Kong Jockey Club's International Races Dec. 12.

Fourteen horses, representing Hong Kong, France and England, were selected Wednesday for the HK$20 million Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Cup, at 2,000 meters over the Sha Tin course. That group is headed by the French-based defending champion, Vision d'Etat, and the English-based, 3-year-old filly Snow Fairy, winner of the English and Irish Oaks and the Queen Elizabeth II Commemorative Cup at Kyoto, Japan, in her last start.

'Month at the Museum' draws to a close

Chicago -- A Chicago woman is spending her final night at the city's Museum of Science and Industry as the winner of the "Month at the Museum" contest.

Kate McGroarty, who was picked as the winner from 1,500 applicants, moved into the museum Oct. 20 and will complete her experience Thursday after a month of museum experiences shared with the public on her Facebook, Twitter and blog.

Silver -- no contest -- is top car color

Troy, Mich. -- Almost one in three 2010 model cars sold in the United States shared at least one similarity: the color silver, an industry study found.

PPG Industries said its latest annual survey on car colors put silver well ahead of the pack with 31 percent of U.S. cars sporting a silver paint job.

It was the 10th consecutive year silver, including charcoal and gray, topped the list. Following silver, the car-buying public's taste has fluctuated over the years, The Detroit News reported Wednesday.

Virtually equal numbers of buyers -- 18 percent each -- chose black or white cars from the 2010 model line-ups. Red was chosen 11 percent of the time, followed by blue at 10 percent.

Bears place Hillenmeyer on injured reserve

Chicago -- Chicago Bears linebacker Hunter Hillenmeyer has been placed on injured reserve due to lingering concussion effects, the team said Tuesday.

Hillenmeyer, 29, was injured during an Aug. 28 pre-season contest against Arizona. Despite passing a battery of tests before the Bears' season-opening game Sunday, he became ill and was taken out at halftime.

"Player health and safety has and always will be a priority with our organization," Bears General Manager Jerry Angelo said. "Unlike other injuries, there is no defined timetable for a concussion. After consulting with our doctors and Hunter, this was the best way to proceed."

Man who blamed cat gets 12.5 years

Jensen Beach, Fla. -- A Florida man who blamed his cat for downloading child pornography pleaded no contest to 25 felony charges, earning him 12 1/2 years in prison.

Keith Griffin, 49, of Jensen Beach, Fla., pleaded no contest to the 25 felony charges, which involved possession of child pornography images on his computer, after initially telling Martin County sheriff's deputies in August 2009 that the images were downloaded as a result of his cat jumping on his keyboard while he was away from home, TCPalm.com reported Thursday.

Circuit Judge Sherwood Bauer sentenced Griffin to 12 1/2 years for each count with the sentences to be served concurrently. He was given credit for 397 days served and added to the state's sex offender registry.

Lautner suit target suggests push-ups

Irvine, Calif. -- A California recreational vehicle dealer says he wants to resolve the lawsuit actor Taylor Lautner filed against him with a push-up contest instead of a trial.

Brent McMahon, 47, owner of McMahon's RV in Irvine, said he wants to settle the lawsuit brought against him by the "Twilight" film series star, who claims the dealership failed to deliver a $300,000 customized RV on time and up to his specifications, with a contest of muscles instead of legal wrangling, KTLA-TV, Los Angeles, reported Tuesday.

McMahon, who claims the RV was delivered to Lautner without any complaints from the 18-year-old actor, said he is challenging the muscular star to a contest to see who can do the most push-ups as a means of resolving the dispute.

X Prize Foundation announces $1.4mn oil clean up contest

A nonprofit prize institute, the X Prize Foundation, on Thursday in a press conference at Washington D.C. announced 1.4-million-dollar contest to motivate people to come up with better and workable ideas/solutions to clean-up oil spill from the Gulf of Mexico.

Seattle writer wins bad fiction contest

Seattle -- A Seattle author was named the winner of a contest to create an opening sentence to begin the worst possible novel.

Molly Ringle, who has published one novel with two more on the way, was declared the winner of the 28th annual Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest, a bad-writing contest sponsored by San Jose State University, the California school said.

"For the first month of Ricardo and Felicity's affair, they greeted one another at every stolen rendezvous with a kiss -- a lengthy, ravenous kiss, Ricardo lapping and sucking at Felicity's mouth as if she were a giant cage-mounted water bottle and he were the world's thirstiest gerbil," Ringle's prize-winning sentence read.

Turnout high at National Hollerin' Contest

Spivey's Corner, N.C. -- Organizers of the 42nd annual National Hollerin' Contest in North Carolina said turnout was high with 27 competitors and hundreds of spectators.

Chief organizer Wayne Edwards said people from across the country came Saturday to Spivey's Corner to share their best hollers, hoots, yodels and bellows to benefit the Spivey's Corner Volunteer Fire Department, the Fayetteville (N.C.) Observer reported Monday.

Tony Peacock of Silver City, N.C., said he was surprised his hollering rendition of Gershwin's "Summertime" earned him the top prize.

"I just didn't have any expectations ... I guess you just get lucky," he said. "I had to cut that last holler short, because I only had two seconds left."